Hrithik Roshan in Onir's Hamlet?
The director feels that only Duggu can do justice to the title role.india Updated: Apr 15, 2006 16:30 IST
How weary, stale, flat, and unprofitable Seem to me all the uses of this world! These might have been Shakespeare's words for Hamlet, but it seems Bollywood cannot get enough of the Bard these days.
Though King Lear has inspired many modern versions and adaptations (mostly uncredited) Vishal Bharadwaj gave Shakespeare Indian colours with his Maqbool, based on Macbeth, and is currently breathing life into Othello, Iago and Desdemona for his interpretation of Othello.
The latest to embrace Shakespeare are Onir, director of My Brother Nikhil, and Serendipity Films (Ambika Hinduja and Dinesh Vijan), producers of Being Cyrus. Bhavani Iyer, writer of Sanjay Leela Bhansali's Black has been enlisted to write the script.
Hamlet is the story of the Prince of Denmark, haunted by the murder of his father the king and his mother's infidelity. It is the classic tragedy that most appeals to literature student Onir. "Hamlet is one of my favourite Shakespearan plays. I studied it in depth when I was a student of literature," says Onir who is busy with the post-pro duction of his second film Bas Ek Pal.
Onir feels that only Hrithik can do justice to the title role in his version of Hamlet .
Though it is at an early stage of development, Onir is clear that he wants to set his Hamlet in contemporary India - either Mumbai or Delhi. "With a modern family, capturing the essence of the drama," he adds pointing out that Maqbool and Othello had a rural grunge feel which he doesn't relate to. "The script will need lots of work and development, but I have the idea of fusing magic realism with Shakespeare's idiom. Though I am not writing the script, I will be closely involved."
That leaves the exciting prospect of casting for parts like Hamlet, Polonius and Ophelia. "I need fantastic actors with the right faces. Like I need an Ophelia with innocence and I am completely stumped on any ideas for her. But I would love Hrithik Roshan to play the part of Hamlet, or maybe Siddharth from Rang De Basanti."
This might not be Onir's third project as he'd rather get the script and casting right before beginning Hamlet. But he is sure that the music will only be used as background score. "There is no 'To be or not be' question there," he laughs.